I’m someone who has been in the Apple ecosystem for a very long time and I own pretty much every Apple product including the Apple TV. I’ve used it for two years now and considered it to be the best streaming device because it always worked in my setup. In between, I got to try other streaming devices like Roku Streaming Stick and Google Chromecast. They did a lot more than just streaming, but weren’t all that user-friendly.
Everytime I pick up the remote, I just want to the content in a few clicks. The Apple TV let me do just that and I was content with it, until I tried Amazon Fire TV.
Hands down, Amazon Fire TV is the best streaming box ever made!
Amazon Fire TV Video Review
Software part of the device is where it truly stands out from other streaming boxes. Setting up the Amazon Fire TV took only a few seconds and then setting up a service like UnoTelly took a couple of minutes which supports usage of services like Netflix and Hulu which are not available in India. Amazon Fire TV runs a custom version of Android which is similar to the ones on their Kindle Fire tablets. The whole interface is fluid and smooth because of the new quad-core processor and dedicated graphics.
Services is the key to any streaming box. Fire TV is built around Amazon’s services like Amazon Prime and Cloud. Since it runs Android, it has a huge list of apps which can run of the Fire TV. The support of the Android apps make the Amazon Fire TV a lot more powerful.
As mentioned earlier, I’m in the Apple Ecosystem, I use Airplay often on my Apple TV to directly streaming media. Though the Fire TV does not have airplay, I was able to download an app to enable that feature! This is what makes Amazon Fire TV amazing. I was out of luck when searching for AirPlay apps on the Roku Streaming Stick and Chromecast but none of them have any third-party apps. For those who don’t use AirPlay, Plex Media streaming is supported on the Fire TV.
App store for Fire TV is not just limited to apps, It has tons of games. I found a wide variety of games to choose, I played Flappy Birds, Minecraft and BadLand. There are graphic intensive games like Asphalt 8 and EPOCH also which run smoothly on the Fire TV. Most of the games are playable with the included remote. For a better gaming experience, Amazon sells separate controller which retails for $40.
Coming to the remote, it works via Bluetooth and it works out of the box since the batteries are included. The remote is made out of plastic and feels cheap compared to the Roku or Apple TV remote. The remote works with bluetooth so it’s not necessary to have it pointed toward the device for changes.
One of the biggest feature of the user experience is the universal search which floats on top of everything. Typing with a remote is ridiculously hard, so Amazon has made the universal search primary input as voice. The search feature is not limited to the content on the device. It can search content on online services like Amazon Store and Hulu.
The search button is on top of the remote, holding down the button and you can use voice to search. The best part is that the remote includes a microphone, so search is always in the remote reach. Voice search works flawlessly.
This is the best media streaming box you can get for under $100 right now. Amazon Fire TV retails for $99 in the US. If you’re from India and you want to get your hands on the device right now, you can buy one from shopyourworld for around